The Wedding Dress Circle – Jennifer Ryan

Grace is getting married and she has been given her mothers old wedding dress to use – however it is perhaps not in perfect condition, it has perished in parts and the moths have got to the others and perhaps it is not really a true reflection of Grace but is her impending marriage a true reflection either ? Grace knows if she goes to the local village sewing circle she will be able to find some help.

Cressida Westcott is a name everyone knows ibn the fashion world even during the Second World War. But London is not always the safest place to be and when Cressida’s home and studio are completely devastated and all she has is the clothes she stands in, she needs to find some courage to change. Unfortunately that means going back to the family home where she never had a pleasant life.

Violet Wescott is Cressida’s niece and is beside excitement that this famous and infamous aunt has returned to the family home. Violet sees herself as waiting to find the right husband to keep her in the manner to which she wants to be accustomed to. However the country is at war and young unattached single women are called up to service. Violet is about to learn what life is really like.

These three women with different backgrounds, classes, and outlook of life and love are drawn together because of the village sewing circle. Where just as food is rationed, clothes are rationed too. The make do and mend philosophy is living well and the women come together and share their knowledge, their strength and their wedding dresses so that woman can always have that special outfit for their big day even if there is a war on.

At the heart of the novel as with Jennifer Ryan’s other is strong female characters, showing their strength in different ways. However there is so much you learn from her novels that I was totally absorbed in everything as I devoured this book. Even better when you learn something too and I even almost wanted to get my own sewing machine out and have a go at making my own clothes!

If you are fan of historical fiction and perhaps want a different take on what went on at the Home Front then this and pervious novels are the go to books I would recommend.

Thank you to the publisher via netgalley for the opportunity to read this book.

The Wedding Dress Sewing Circle is out now.

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